What has 25 water bottles, a lumbar strap, and three zippers? The Mountainsmith Recycled Day Pack of course! Except the water bottles are in, well, a different form. Pretty impressive Mountainsmith has stepped it up by re-using that much plastic for their bags and still sustain a good performing waist pack.
The pack can be used for just about everything. I have seen photographers pack this full of padding to rally a SLR camera, moms packing it with diapers, and soil scientists using it to carry planting supplies in the field. Compared to the previous models of the Day lumbar pack, I noticed this model has a zipper upgrade making opening easier with one hand. The straps are trimmed down a bit also, it can be annoying when you have an airport travel bag that seems to have unnecessarily long straps flopping around.
Light or Heavy, it doesn’t matter
When I hit the farmers market to pick up my favorite cranberry-jalapeno salsa, I sport the pack on one shoulder briefcase style. After picking up the freshest produce I throw the shoulder strap across the chest to help carry the extra weight. Then when I want to buy that really heavy rock sculpture I strap on the lumbar strap to transfer the weight on the hips. The Day pack exceeds versatility expectations.
The Day pack offers 854 cu. in. capacity compared to the trimmed down sister version, the Tour, coming in at 488 cu. in. If you aren’t carrying 850 cubic inches of stuff around you probably want to nab the Tour pack. If the Day pack isn’t filled up it can be a bit annoying with the sagging empty space. The outer yellow bungee has been great for attaching a rain jacket and the lower compression straps help suck in the un-used space.
The top gear loops are very easy to grab on to when passing the bag to someone else. Compared to the Osprey Float bag, the Day gear loops are way better. I can never seem to grab the Floats tiny top gear loop and end up grabbing a handful of material. The Day shoulder strap comes off literally with a snap which has been really nice for hiking use. Other waist packs have their shoulder straps sewed on making them less versatile. The lumbar straps also tuck away when not in use, nothing says ‘gomer’ more than un-used straps flopping around while at the coffee shop.
To make this bag more competitive against other waist packs I would include a cell phone holder. I know us outdoor gear freaks all think we don’t carry a cell phone, but lets be honest. Mountainsmith makes the Amp Cell Phone holder so maybe retailers might consider selling it as a coupled deal to keep up with the times? However maybe keeping them separate would be cool to mix and match colors and give us the ability to put the holder exactly where we want.
The inner hideway pocket is made with a nylon that I think could be replaced with a felt material that is attached to the inner wall of the pack rather than the outside wall. I found when I had my keys in the pocket it was a pain opening the zipper and retrieving other stuff inside.
More colors than a kaleidoscope
Mountainsmith offers a TON of colors to choose from in all their waist packs making this a great gift idea to fit any personality. I like their design and I’m glad they are keeping it the same. I really hope they don’t do multi-color in the future, their style is untouchable.